1cupgrated manchego cheese113g, plus additional, for garnish
½cupminced red onion75g
1tbspminced fresh garlic8g
1tspground black pepper6g
For the Sauce
124 oz. jar roasted garlic marinara sauce680g
112 oz. jar roasted red bell peppers, drained230g
1slicewhole grain breadtoasted and torn into pieces
1/2cupsmoked salted almonds50g
1tbspextra-virgin olive oil15mL
Couscousquinoa, or salad greens, to serve
½cupchopped fresh parsley or basil30g, for garnish
For the Meatballs
Preheat oven to 425F. In a large bowl stir together turkey, bread crumbs, cheese, onion, garlic, eggs, paprika, salt, and pepper.
Line two rimmed sheet pans with aluminum foil; spray with cooking spray.
Using a small (1 oz.) scoop or a tablespoon, scoop out meatballs, and place on prepared baking sheets.
Drizzle meatballs with olive oil; bake until cooked through, about 15 minutes.
For the Sauce
Meanwhile, in the container of a blender or a food processor, combine marinara, peppers, toasted bread, almonds, olive oil, and smoked paprika.
Blend or process until smooth. Transfer to a medium saucepan; bring to a simmer over medium heat.
Reduce heat to low; simmer gently for 10 minutes.
Serve meatballs over couscous, quinoa, or salad greens; garnish with additional cheese and parsley.
You can prep the meatballs in advance and store them in the fridge covered until ready to be baked
If you'd like a little heat you can add fresh or dried chili to the sauce or meatballs
If you can't find smoked almonds you can use regular almonds which will help thicken the sauce but you'll lose the smoky flavor
Make sure to use fresh garlic and not ground as you won't get the same fresh and bold flavor
To keep the meatballs uniform in size use a small ice cream scoop or tablespoon measure
If you can't find manchego cheese for the meatballs you can use parmesan but make sure to use freshly grated as pre-grated will dry out the meatballs easily
The breadcrumbs help to bind all the ingredients together and also help keep the meatballs moist and juicy so don't skip them
Make sure to use large eggs
Store leftovers in the fridge or freezer
Food Styling note: The bread and almonds add great richness and flavor to the sauce, but they do yield a slightly chunky texture. Cutting the amounts by half would be an acceptable cheat that would make the sauce behave better, and drape over everything more smoothly.